USPTO Reduces Manual Labor with IT Asset Management Solution
By using RAIN RFID to manage more than 115,000 IT assets, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has improved inventory efficiencies and reduced operating costs.
Managing IT assets with RAIN RFID improves operations for U.S. patent office
With over 2.5 million square feet of office space and more than 115,000 IT assets, the USPTO has a lot to keep track of—and a lot of space to lose it in. After noticing that employees were spending roughly 7,700 hours each year inventorying IT assets, the USPTO turned to a RAIN RFID solution to reduce manual labor and reallocate hours for critical tasks. Since the solution’s deployment in 2016, USPTO has saved nearly $1.1 million in asset management costs and achieved the following ROI in less than two years:
- Reduced property custodian labor cost by nearly 80 percent
- Reduced monthly inventory cycle count time from ten to five days
- Achieved 99.9 percent reduction in asset loss
U.S. Patent and Trademark Office cuts manual labor with RAIN RFID asset tracking solution
The United States Patent and Trademark Office plays an important role in protecting intellectual property by examining and issuing patent and trademark registrations, and encouraging an environment where businesses can thrive.
A federal agency under the Department of Commerce, USPTO is required to submit an annual inventory of assets. But with over 150,000 IT assets, the USPTO found that it was spending upwards of 7,700 hours a year taking inventory, rather than focusing on revenue-generating activities.
Recognizing the potential of RAIN RFID to simplify operations and recover time, the agency implemented a solution that manages assets across more than 160 floors. The Impinj and Aware Innovations solution allows assets to be tracked as they move in and out of USPTO buildings. Here’s how it works:
- All IT assets—from iPads to AV equipment—are tagged with RAIN RFID tag chips
- Impinj xPortal and Speedway readers placed in doorways and hallways track the movement of assets throughout multiple locations and floors, while Impinj xArray readers monitor entrances, security checkpoints, and wherever wide-area monitoring was required
- In addition, handheld readers help verify item location each month
- Item data is sent to USPTO’s ERP software, where management can view the location of IT assets in real time
After nearly two years, USPTO has seen significant ROI from the RAIN RFID solution. For example, the solution has helped reduce monthly inventory cycle count time from ten to five days, reduce asset shrink to zero and reduce property custodian labor cost by nearly 80 percent. In addition, USPTO can now better monitor contractor performance associated with asset management due to increased asset visibility. As a result, USPTO has saved nearly $1.1 million in asset management costs.
Automated IT asset management allows USPTO to focus on the future
Automated inventory counts realign focus to goal-fulfilling tasks
Previously, quarterly inventory counts cost USPTO roughly 7,700 hours of labor annually. Since deployment, USPTO has seen nearly 80 percent reduction, equivalent of around 6,000 hours, in labor cost associated with inventory management. USPTO can now reallocate employee hours to tasks that generate revenue, sustain policy, and support a healthy business environment.
Always know where IT assets are
Prior to the RAIN RFID solution, field technicians were required to manually update the location and custodian of each asset. Now, readers automatically track item location as assets move through USPTO facilities. If an asset goes missing, reliable location information makes it easy for employees to resolve the issue. To date, the automation has resulted in 99.9 percent reduction in asset loss.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is a federal agency that manages the filing and registration of patents and trademarks, and the administration of laws and regulations needed to promote progress and protect intellectual property.
Aware Innovations, a division of Evanhoe & Associates, Inc., creates scalable tracking and management solutions that integrate existing and emerging technologies (Barcodes, RFID, RTLS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, IoT, Mesh Networks, and GPS) to give customers across industries the power and visibility to make intelligent decisions. They provide consulting services, solution design, hardware and software integration, and training.